So now that I've mastered the Bourbon/Rye drinks in my home mixology 101 quest and the weather is turning colder, I've been thinking about moving on to Scotch based cocktails for my next round of experimentation (Rob Roys, Bobby Burns, etc). Any suggestions for a good mid level scotch that could work primarily as a mixing spirit but survive as a sipping drink if needs be? For comparison I tend to use Maker's Mark (or Rittenhouse Rye when I can find it) as a good standard mixer while keeping a revolving rotation of higher end stuff for when I want it straight. Was hoping for something in that range/quality.
I don't know much about Scotch so was hoping this would be a good entry point before developing my tastes to direct the better stuff. Was thinking one of the Johnnie Walkers but don't know if that's really just a mass brand and that I'd regret it once I knew better.
Thanks in advance.